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Broken Arrow hires 20th new firefighter nearly 3 years ahead of schedule

FEMA awarded the Broken Arrow Fire Department a grant to hire 11 new firefighters in February. A previous federal grant gave the department the means to hire 9 firefighters in November 2015. (File/KTUL)

The Broken Arrow Fire Department had until 2020 to hire 20 new firefighters under a Vision 2025 Renewal campaign promise. The department has now hired its 20th firefighter since that promise was made in November 2015.

FEMA awarded the Broken Arrow Fire Department a grant to hire 11 new firefighters in February. A previous federal grant gave the department the means to hire 9 firefighters in November 2015.

“We're proud to have been able to fulfill our promise to our citizens almost three years ahead of schedule,” Fire Chief Jeremy Moore said in a press release. “These new firefighters will help improve the services BAFD provides and ensure our community continues to enjoy a high quality of life.”

During a November 2015 vote, the Tulsa County Vision 2025 sales tax was repurposed to fund more police officer and firefighter positions and pay for street improvements. The two grants fund the 20 firefighter positions for two years from when the positions are filled, but the Vision 2025 funds mean the positions will be permanent beyond those two years.

"What we heard from Broken Arrow residents, when they voted to renew the Vision 2025 tax, is that public safety matters,” said Mayor Craig Thurmond in a press release. “I’m thrilled to see new firefighters added to our ranks ahead of schedule, so that we can continue providing timely life-saving services to our rapidly growing community.”

The fire department's authorized strength is now at 173, according to the city of Broken Arrow.

The addition of these 20 new firefighters comes just in time as the city plans to open a brand new station.

“It takes about 15 firefighters for the three shifts and then people for vacations and call backs so it takes about 17 firefighters to open a new station," Thurmond said.

He said they have not set a date as to when they will open this additional station.


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